A fine-dining buffet worthy of the Hyatt (but the price will surprise you!) | HerCanberra

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A fine-dining buffet worthy of the Hyatt (but the price will surprise you!)

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Do you ever hanker for the choice and quantity of a buffet but like your restaurant experiences to have a fine-dining edge?

The Hyatt’s Promenade Café offers a substantial spread of classic dishes, the theatre of a laksa and pasta station where a chef cooks to order, and a dessert display that will entice you to find room—no matter how many serves you’ve eaten.

And, of course, all of this is enjoyed with the level of service, luxury and flair that has always stood the Hyatt apart.

Classic decor and buffet of classic dishes

While the hotel’s famed seafood buffet has been a fairly permanent fixture on many local foodie radars, not everyone knows about the midweek offering of a Grazing Table Buffet, which allows you to indulge in countless dishes over two hours for $49 (not including drinks). With children amply catered for at just $24.50, the buffet offers outstanding value.

But we are even more excited by the tastes.

To begin, there is a charcuterie station of aged cheeses, salami, pickles and stuffed peppers.

Fresh bread of every description is accompanied by Lescure French butter.

A salad station features an entire side of fresh-cooked salmon, rare-seared tuna and everything you need to assemble your own Niçoise.

What catches our eye immediately is a chilled bowl of giant burrata, just waiting to be placed upon heirloom tomato slices.

How many burrata can one person get through in a buffet?

Taking cues from the classic comfort foods of yesteryear, along with culinary favourites that have been served at top restaurants around the world since the 1920s, you can slice yourself a decadent slab of Lyonnaise potatoes over at the hot food station to accompany your Beef Bourguignon or Baked Barramundi with Meuniere sauce.

Dishes are influenced by menus sourced from around the world, including the Hyatt’s own menus from the ‘30s, as well as the Ritz Carlton, Waldorf Astoria and the Roosevelt.

A more modern twist is the availability of Southeast Asian cuisine via chef David, who mans the open kitchen which features a Laksa Station. You choose how much chili, herbs, tofu or seafood goes into your bowl and David expertly dishes it out.

Similarly, he can pull together a linguine with cream, chilli and mushroom with the flick of a blow torch and a giant wheel of cheese. Kids will especially appreciate the spectacle and the luscious pasta which results from it.

With so much to see and taste, it’s important to pace oneself, although we will admit to starting with the hot dishes before moving on to the cold ones. And then we may have even gone back again to second serves of hot food. It’s a buffet and this sort of indulgence is not only expected – it’s encouraged! Some of us may have even gone back for fifths.

Service is Hyatt-standard with plates unobtrusively removed the minute they are finished, allowing us, in true buffet style, to stand up in search of the next dish.

And just when we think we cannot fit another bite in, it is time for dessert, and a whole new world opens up before us.

The dessert buffet is like something Willy Wonka would dream up…

Rows upon rows of delicate morsels looking like they have arrived straight from a French patisserie require multiple trips to try them all. The pavlova, absolutely laden with fruit and cream is a standout, as is the coconut panna cotta. A platter of fruit, constantly being replenished, means there is some sort of a palate cleanser between the strawberry shortcake and the chocolate mousse. Luckily, we have already eaten a cheese course between our first and second salads, because we really are reaching the edge of our levels of endurance.

The night we dine, both sides of the restaurant are full, requiring us to ask ourselves, how did everyone else know about this culinary experience and not us?

Maybe we were too distracted by all the new openings to remember this iconic place.

The buffet changes frequently for the benefit of hotel quests but is open to all and can comfortably cater for a special occasion/date night/celebration meal to a simple midweek family meal (because given the price of burrata it’s almost cheaper to eat here than at home).

Despite being unspeakably full, we manage an elegant stroll through the hotel’s beautiful heritage thoroughfares and along the classic black and white tiled floors the Hyatt is known for. This Grand Dame of an institution turns 100 this year and both its local and national significance deserve to be celebrated.

Meanwhile, we are celebrating a fine dining experience at an extraordinary price.

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THE ESSENTIALS

What: Hyatt’s Grazing Table Buffet
When: Tuesday to Thursday from 6:00pm.
Where: The Promenade Café. Enjoy a three-course buffet-style menu for $49 per person, $24.50 child (6-12 years).
Web: Book now at the Promenade Cafe

 

 

 

 

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